SKICC Renamed As Kashmir International Conference Centre

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KO Pic : Abid Bhat

SRINAGAR – The Jammu and Kashmir government has dropped “Sher-i-Kashmir” from the name of Sher-i-Kashmir International Conference Centre (SKICC) and renamed it as the Kashmir International Conference Centre.

The ”Sher-i-Kashmir” title was in reference to former Chief Minister Sheikh Abdullah.

The government-run facility on the banks of the Dal lake in Srinagar has hosted a number of conferences and ceremonies.

The SKICC was turned into a subsidiary jail since scrapping of the special status of J&K under Article 370 on August 5 last year. Around 40 mainstream leaders were lodged at SKICC after being detained following the abrogation of J&K special status. Among those detained at the SKICC were People’s Conference chairman Sajad Lone, senior PDP leader Naeem Akhtar, PDP’s youth wing president Waheed ur Rehman Para, senior NC leader Ali Mohammad Sagar, and bureaucrat-turned-politician Shah Faesal.

Meanwhile, the National Conference (NC) has hit out at the government for erasing the name of its founder.

The NC in its official twitter account tweeted: “The inextinguishable fire of jealousy current regime is burning in due to the unmatchable stature of Sher e Kashmir makes them resort to such distasteful exhibition of power. History is a witness and Sher e Kashmir will continue to stand tallest.”

NC spokesperson Imran Nabi Dar tweeted: “Dropping Sher-i-Kashmir”s name from SKICC is another blatant, futile attempt to erase our history and legacy. @JKNC unequivocally condemns the move.”

“This is vendetta politics. Sheikh Abdullah”s contribution for the socio economic upliftment of Kashmir cannot be erased,” he said.

 

In another tweet, he wrote: “Nixing Sher e Kashmir from SKICC is not only vendatta of the highest kind but a physical manifestation of the false narrative targetting legacy and life of Sher e Kashmir in last 3 decades. Fact is no one can erase how SMA propelled social equality, education, healthcare in JK.”

Iltija Mufti, daughter of Mehbooba Mufti, who operates her mothers Twitter account tweeted: “Sheikh sahab was a political giant & played an instrumental role in J&;K”s accession to India. His pro-poor land reforms transformed millions of lives. GOI can”t obliterate his contributions by such petty decisions. It”s etched in the hearts of Kashmiris.”

Earlier, prominent changes were made in the list of public holidays for the year 2020. Martyrs” Day observed on July 13 and the birth anniversary of former Chief Minister Sheikh Abdullah on December 5 were dropped, and instead, October 26 was added as public holiday to be observed as Accession Day.

Martyrs” Day had been observed in J&K on July 13 every year in remembrance of Kashmiris killed in firing by soldiers of Dogra ruler Maharaja Hari Singh in 1931 during protests against his rule.

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